How Americans Learned to Love Their Front Lawns | NYT

  • Published: 08 August 2019
  • America’s lawns represent the pride of homeownership and community. But maintaining them risks contributing to climate change. So why do we even have lawns in the first place? We traced their history.

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Comments • 264

  • The New York Times
    The New York Times   3 months back

    The New York Times is interested in your feedback! Take our survey:

    • vaultsoferowid
      vaultsoferowid  3 months back

      Here is my feedback, you are a useless Liberal mouthpiece who promotes racism on every subject.

    • Zanzibar979
      Zanzibar979  3 months back

      A meadow is murmurous with wasp and midge: By comparison, a lawn is dead.

    • mami
      mami  3 months back

      The New York Times the way he says "perfect" like "perfick" and the amount of times he said it makes me want to dislike.

  • Nikki 93
    Nikki 93  2 weeks back

    The 1950s the golden years but not for black people. White privilege but not for black people. The 19th century but not for black people. Affirmative action but not for oh wait. Section 8 but not for oh wait.

    • Andy Macedo
      Andy Macedo  1 months back

      So for 243 years the constitution works and is followed and now it's just ignored ! Because of one family and two or three guys ! Wow ! Anyway keep up the fantastic work ! Especially on the mental health awareness ! That's hysterical ! Ironic !

      • Mean Old Lady
        Mean Old Lady  2 months back

        And cidiots who lived in smog-filled hellholes with feces & needles in the streets & are bringing back 3rd world plagues are the ones lecturing people who live in & manage their own rural paradises on climate change...
        There's a reason Pol Pot liquidated the cities from all the useless consumers & sent them to work to death (because they were soft & flabby instead of strong through hard work) in the killing fields...

        • ⵉⵜⵔⵓⵏⴰⵓⵜ
          ⵉⵜⵔⵓⵏⴰⵓⵜ  3 months back

          Lawns, a fantastic waste of water, time and space.

          • R P
            R P  3 months back

            NYTimes fail! They say pesticide, when it is clearly an herbicide that is sprayed :30
            Do these idiots writers have any common sense or have they ever actually worked with their hands?

            • Tessie Rogers
              Tessie Rogers  3 months back

              I like how they refer to family picnics as "communal rituals." People don't realize its wicked to sit in the grass with your family. I really like how their historical timeline fails to mention the industrial revolution which many children died working in the factories. The first Republican president of America, abolishing slavery & the reason for the civil war was Republicans were against slavery. They blame lawn care for contaminated water when pesticides used on millions of crops and zoonotic disease spread from animal feces getting into the water is not included in this video. I can go on, but I would have to make a video an hour long, just naming off all the wrong info and waste of time of this video.

              • rob379
                rob379  3 months back

                Slavery is bad. I give the punk-kid across the street $5.25 to cut my 1.2 acre lawn every week.

                • The Rεal Hal Jordan
                  The Rεal Hal Jordan  3 months back

                  just had to randomly inject racism into this video about grass

                  • Nan Matau
                    Nan Matau  3 months back

                    My son and his wife recently purchased their first home in eastern North Carolina. It's a beautiful place with a deep stream running behind it. Only drawback I can see is a HUGE front lawn. It's easily over 20 meters from the front door to the road and about the same width. Seems like a waste of real estate since most Americans do very little in their front yards besides mow them.

                    • R P
                      R P  3 months back

                      Nan Matau meters? That is not very big dude. His kids will be playing football on it dude. Relax.

                  • Vlican
                    Vlican  3 months back

                    can't wait until environmentalists start attacking lawn enthusiasts

                    • alek
                      alek  3 months back

                      Vlican remember when they attacked nuclear power? Environmentalists are some of the dumbest people on earth

                  • Dave Joyce
                    Dave Joyce  3 months back

                    All the references to slavery and racism literally had nothing to do with the subject of the video.

                    • C Smith
                      C Smith  3 months back

                      I guess it part of the 1619 project they are pushing.

                  • Ryan Duncan
                    Ryan Duncan  3 months back

                    Can confirm: Levittown is sadly still extremely white even today...

                    • Ryan Duncan
                      Ryan Duncan  3 months back

                      Racism of the past in that town became de facto segregation today.

                    • MrPittsburghJ
                      MrPittsburghJ  3 months back


                  • Elim Wells
                    Elim Wells  3 months back

                    NYT is just a bunch of Communist loons pushing identity politics. Identity politics and climate change are the choice weapons of the Communists these days. Don't listen to them, they're idiots. Remember, back in the day the NYT was pro Stalin.

                    • C. Lincoln
                      C. Lincoln  3 months back

                      The racial wealth disparity is a direct result of government policy.
                      Therefor the government has to pay reparations for how its mistreated its black citizens - not just during slavery, but long after that.

                      • William Bare
                        William Bare  3 months back

                        the New York Times has no and will never have any shame.

                        • thealpage
                          thealpage  3 months back

                          Lawn mower emissions........I think this was supposed to be posted on theOnion

                          • Lennon Zheng
                            Lennon Zheng  3 months back

                            Not much lawns here in Cali.

                            • ShakespeareCafe
                              ShakespeareCafe  3 months back

                              Long past time to rethink the lawn. America has the accumulated lawn area equal to the size of West Virginia. Imagine how much precious GASOLINE required to mow that, including fertilizer that is turning the Gulf of Mexico along Florida into a toxic algae dump. California leads nation in promoting native and low water grasses.

                              • Alex Fox
                                Alex Fox  3 months back

                                Interesting. I always thought of Jefferson as a major proponent of land husbandry for [white, landowning] Americans. I should look more into this.

                                • R P
                                  R P  3 months back

                                  Alex Fox exactly. The yeoman farmer was his ideal.
                                  The yeomen farmer who owned his own modest farm and worked it primarily with family labor remains the embodiment of the ideal American: honest, virtuous, hardworking, and independent. These same values made yeomen farmers central to the republican vision of the new nation.

                                  No mention of this in the Commie Times or the new commie textbooks or media.

                              • Kemal Rifky
                                Kemal Rifky  3 months back

                                OMG IS NYT BECOMING VOX?!?!?!?

                                • Josiah Smith
                                  Josiah Smith  3 months back

                                  I appreciate the acknowledgment that black people weren’t allowed access to this portion of the American experience

                                  • Josiah Smith
                                    Josiah Smith  3 months back

                                    R P Look up redlining

                                  • R P
                                    R P  3 months back

                                    Josiah Smith they couldn’t buy land and develop it, build houses themselves?

                                • rogblake1
                                  rogblake1  3 months back

                                  This is just a short marixist add on to the story of the new UN report that says we all need to give up steak and eat legumes cuz of you know white privilege

                                  • Rotor Ruckus
                                    Rotor Ruckus  3 months back

                                    Came for the scoot mower, left disappointed.

                                    • Shawn Hill
                                      Shawn Hill  3 months back

                                      This sounds like a video made by a guy with way too much time on his hands

                                      • jerry
                                        jerry  3 months back

                                        You liberals are so whacked in the head.

                                        • The Trump News Network
                                          The Trump News Network  3 months back

                                          pity this is so politically bias....but it's the NYT so no surprise

                                          • RastaRyaNurse
                                            RastaRyaNurse  3 months back

                                            I was hoping it was the other grass .

                                            • Seán Jared
                                              Seán Jared  3 months back

                                              Just the like the NYT to take a story "allegedly" about lawns and turn into a story about American racism. Now do one on how New York(state and city) and the NYT got rich on the backs of slaves. FACT!

                                              • A A
                                                A A  3 months back

                                                And duping Native Americans

                                            • Sweet Cheeks
                                              Sweet Cheeks  3 months back

                                              Climate change. Lol

                                              • Michael Craig
                                                Michael Craig  3 months back

                                                I cant stand when people say "American" in the context, as if, that only Americans do something. "The sandwich AMERICANS like", etc...The human condition and ideas, and aspirations, are very similar around the world. You think people only have lawns here? Stop it, just stop already.

                                                • mrbear1302
                                                  mrbear1302  3 months back

                                                  Uh oh better make sure your grass has a "green card" or ICE might come and deport it!

                                                  • Travels World
                                                    Travels World  3 months back

                                                    I doubt it and I don’t believe it 😂

                                                    • Kobe Wild
                                                      Kobe Wild  3 months back

                                                      Sorry, I like lawns, they look nice.. they put a buffer between you and the sidewalk without a fence or other harsh buffer. They are green that makes the front of the home cooler as they give up water during the day.
                                                      they are better than rocks and small bushes who wants to walk across those...
                                                      My lawn has a surrounded by bushes so I can go out and on it without being disturbed.
                                                      Lawns are very zen.. I feel relaxed when i get home and pet my lawn.
                                                      I don't cut it tho... I pay for lawn care... yard work is not work I want or need to do..

                                                      • Prison Mike
                                                        Prison Mike  3 months back

                                                        I love how NYT makes a video of lawns somehow makes it into how racism & lawns existed

                                                        • Vinny
                                                          Vinny  3 months back

                                                          AND NOW IN 2019 I HAVE A FAKE LAWN THAT I WILL NEVER HAVE TO CUT OR WATER, AMAZING

                                                          • Vinny
                                                            Vinny  3 months back

                                                            @R P what the fake grass is made out of oil?

                                                          • R P
                                                            R P  3 months back

                                                            Vinny you do know it is made out of oil right?

                                                        • J.R. Vasquez
                                                          J.R. Vasquez  3 months back

                                                          Green grass lawns are PROOF of what sheeple Americans are. It sucks I know. I was a green lawn lover for most of my adult life. I got rid of it and I feel good about it. Now the debate about green lawns is being tied into the Socialism (dog whistle for Communism) vs FREEDOM (sheeple Capitalism). We are so stupid sometimes.

                                                          • bluzshadez
                                                            bluzshadez  3 months back

                                                            Those tools used by the slaves to cut grass are called SICKLES.

                                                            • bluzshadez
                                                              bluzshadez  3 months back

                                                              Sickle represents Labourers.

                                                            • R P
                                                              R P  3 months back

                                                              bluzshadez classic communist symbol

                                                          • Firstname Lastname
                                                            Firstname Lastname  3 months back

                                                            Wait, who was the Parisian girl who tried to commit suicide by leaping off the Arc de Triomphe?!

                                                            • LagiNaLangAko23
                                                              LagiNaLangAko23  3 months back

                                                              We must destroy lawns and replace them with actual useful plants.

                                                              • Charl Albertyn
                                                                Charl Albertyn  3 months back

                                                                D'aah. Whipipo.

                                                                • R G.
                                                                  R G.  3 months back

                                                                  The idea behind it, it seems, was to discourage people from growing their own vegetables so they become more dependent on the government/market. And it worked.

                                                                  • Red Balloon
                                                                    Red Balloon  3 months back

                                                                    I mowed the lawn just there on Friday evening. I try to mow it every week, especially at this time of year. It looks nice.

                                                                    • CB
                                                                      CB  3 months back

                                                                      The rule of lawn

                                                                      • The Most Original Gamer
                                                                        The Most Original Gamer  3 months back

                                                                        They colonize us too but forget to implement those all good necessary habits :(

                                                                        • Toby Linville
                                                                          Toby Linville  3 months back

                                                                          And just like lawns, the new status symbol is to scrap intellectualism and objectivity and tell history from a narrow-minded, post-modern, self-righteous, anti-capitalist perspective. So people feel they live in an oppressive society and always have a constant enemy. Their narcissistic minds see victims and villains in everything and then pretend they care the most, making them better that you.
                                                                          People have always tended to the aesthetics of the ground around their homes and it had nothing to do with slaves, but even slaves tended to the grounds around their homes.

                                                                          • vaultsoferowid
                                                                            vaultsoferowid  3 months back

                                                                            They always create issues out of nothing. Always redefining the past to suit their agenda of hate.

                                                                            We have lawns because they reduce the number of unwanted insects, like fleas and ticks.

                                                                          • Jefferson Johanes
                                                                            Jefferson Johanes  3 months back

                                                                            Well, that's the very nature of radical left. One can only be patient when dealing with people with such unorthodox views.

                                                                        • jturner405
                                                                          jturner405  3 months back

                                                                          Thanks New York Times! Love you and I gladly pay a subscription. I hope you make lots of money on your content. 😘😘😘😘😘😘😘😘

                                                                          • Kaleb Maxwell
                                                                            Kaleb Maxwell  3 months back

                                                                            Whoa way to politicize something so mundane as mowing the law. Guess we just can’t escape it.

                                                                            • Kaleb Maxwell
                                                                              Kaleb Maxwell  3 months back

                                                                              @Alexander Christopher No, what I'm saying is that you are taking some and normal as mowing your lawn, and deliberately linking it to slavery. Which is like saying Oh, Hitler drank beer I guess beer is racist. It is ridiculous.

                                                                            • Alexander Christopher
                                                                              Alexander Christopher  3 months back

                                                                              How is history (something that happened in the past) politicized?
                                                                              Unless you think it's not true that George Washington and Thomas Jefferson owned slaves and liked European style of architecture and lawns, despite many evidences pointing to such conclusions. Or that suburbs had been predominantly white partly due to rascism. Or that the lawnmower existed.